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Yes. We operate in full compliance with standards established by the US Government and reputable Islamic authorities. All of our products are approved by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and certified halal by national and local Islamic authorities. Both the USDA and the Islamic Authorities not only approve and certify our products, but also constantly monitor and supervise our production process.
Once the right animals for production are chosen, we bring them to our barn and treat them with mercy and respect. We feed them with natural grains and we strictly follow the Zabiha methods when we slaughter them.
Halal is an Arabic word meaning “allowed” or” lawful”. The Qur’anic term Halal is that which is permitted and allowed by Allah. Zabiha is another Arabic word, which means the animals are slaughtered according to the teachings of Islam. Zabiha principles prescribe that the animals are not held captive and bolt stunned, but rather hand-slaughtered. Our professional Halal butchers perform this by slitting the throat of the animals while they are standing, instead of hanging them upside down from their feet. Once the animals are dead, their blood is thoroughly removed from their system. This guarantees our customer with healthy meat, processed with the highest standards of hygiene and the most humane slaughtering process.
A Zabiha Specialist should be a mature, adult Muslim and a trusted member of his/her community. A Zabiha Specialist should be well-trained, certified and educated in the following areas.
2. SELECTION OF THE ANIMALS
A. General requirements: A Zabiha Specialist should be well-versed in knowing the kinds of animals and their appearance, gender, age, etc. A Zabiha Specialist should know what kind of animal to pick according to the different occasions and rituals.
B. Udhiyya (sacrifice in a specific time of the year) requirements: A Zabiha Specialist should know the udhiyya requirements and the status of the animals in terms of kind, physical appearance, age, gender and timing of the sacrifice. He should be able to advise the individuals who sacrifice on how to distribute the sacrificed animal according to Islamic law.
C. Aqiqa (celebration of new-born child) requirements: A Zabiha Specialist should know the aqiqa requirements and the status of the animals in terms of kind, physical appearance, age, gender and timing of the aqiqa. He should be able to advise the aqiqa performers on the timing of the sacrifice which is the 7th day post-birth.
D. Nazr (fulfilling a promise after a pledge and/or vow on any given issue) requirements: A Zabiha Specialist should know the nazr requirements and the status of the animals in terms of kind, physical appearance, age, gender and timing of the nazr. He should be able to advise the nazr promisers on the procedures, how to distribute the nazr and who can eat from it.
3. WAITING PERIOD BEFORE THE SACRIFICE AND THE WAITING PERIOD FOR DIFFERENT ANIMALS
A Zabiha Specialist should know the waiting period before the slaughtering. Once the animals arrive at the slaughterhouse, there are different waiting periods for different kinds of animals before they are taken to the killing floor.
4. FEEDING THE ANIMALS TAHIR (PURE AND CLEAN) AND TAYYIB (GOOD IN NATURE) DURING THE WAITING PERIOD BEFORE THE SACRIFICE AND REQUIRED TIME PERIOD
A Zabiha Specialist should know the feeding requirements during the waiting period and how to feed the animals according to the principles of tahir and tayyib.
5. TIMING: DAY LIGHT VS. NIGHT
A Zabiha Specialist should know what the timing is in terms of slaughtering according to specific occasions and rituals.
6. HANDLING THE ANIMAL BEFORE AND DURING THE SLAUGHTER
A Zabiha Specialist should know how to handle the animals before and during the slaughter in terms of pregnancy, milking, soothing, and dragging the animals.
7. FACING QIBLAH (HOLY MOSQUE IN MECCA)
A Zabiha Specialist should know how to face the animals towards the qibla to the best of his/her ability.
8. BLESSING OVER THE ANIMAL BEING SACRIFICED (RECITING THE PRAYERS)
A Zabiha Specialist should know the necessary prayers and how and when to recite them. The Zabiha Specialist should know the blessings to be recited before the animals are slaughtered.
9. THE PRINCIPALS ZABIHA VERSUS NAHR (CUTTING THE NECK OF THE ANIMAL CLOSE TO THE HEAD VERSUS CLOSE TO THE CHEST)
A Zabiha Specialist should know the necessary prayers and when and how to recite them over the animals for blessing. He should know which animals are subject to the principals of zabiha and which animals are subject to the principals of nahr. He should know how to use the sharp blade in terms of downward and upward according to zabiha principals of Islam; how to minimize pain and unnecessary suffering for the animal during the initial cut; not to sever the spinal cord or nervous system. He should know how to achieve the maximum drainage of blood, carrying away in part the waste and microorganisms, thereby improving the meat’s taste, shelf life and healthiness. A Zabiha Specialist should know exactly where to cut in the throat and how many of the four areas he should cut according to different schools of thought: (Hulqum) windpipe; (Mer’l) gullet; and (Evdaj) two jugular veins. A Zabiha Specialist should also know how and when to separate the head from the body. A Zabiha Specialist should know the rules for stunning and bleeding time for different animals.
10. INSPECTING THE ANIMALS AFTER THE SLAUGHTER
A Zabiha Specialist should know how to handle the animals after the slaughter. He should know the proper way of dressing the animals, performing necessary inspection and cutting and processing the meat from the Islamic point of view.
Prepared by Kadir Gunduz, Religious Adviser to NEMA Food Corporation
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Here are some ayahs (verses) from the Holy Qur’an:
2:57. And We gave You the shade of clouds and sent down to you manna and quails saying: “Eat of the good things We have provided for you”; (but they rebelled); to Us they did no harm but they harmed their own souls.
2:168. O ye people! eat of what is on earth lawful and good; and do not follow the footsteps of the evil one for he is to you an avowed enemy.
2:172. O ye who believe! eat of the good things that We have provided for you and be grateful to Allah if it is Him ye worship.
2:173. He hath only forbidden you dead meat and blood and the flesh of swine and that on which any other name hath been invoked besides that of Allah but if one is forced by necessity without wilful disobedience nor transgressing due limits then is he guiltless. For Allah is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful.
5:3. Forbidden to you (for food) are: dead meat blood the flesh of swine and that on which hath been invoked the name of other than Allah that which hath been killed by strangling or by a violent blow or by a headlong fall or by being gored to death; that which hath been (partly) eaten by a wild animal; unless ye are able to slaughter it (in due form); that which is sacrificed on stone (altars); (forbidden) also is the division (of meat) by raffling with arrows: that is impiety. This day have those who reject faith given up all hope of your religion: yet fear them not but fear Me. This day have I perfected your religion for you completed my favor upon you and have chosen for you Islam as your religion. But if any forced by hunger with no inclination to transgression Allah is indeed Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful.
5:4. They ask thee what is lawful to them (as food): say: Lawful unto you are (all) things good and pure: and what ye have taught your trained hunting animals (to catch) in the manner directed to you by Allah; eat what they catch for you but pronounce the name of Allah over it: and fear Allah; for Allah is swift in taking account.
5:5. This day are (all) things good and pure made lawful unto you. The food of the People of the Book is lawful unto you and yours is lawful unto them. (Lawful unto you in marriage) are (not only) chaste women who are believers but chaste women among the People of the Book revealed before your time when ye give them their due dowers and desire chastity not lewdness nor secret intrigues. If anyone rejects faith fruitless is his work and in the Hereafter he will be in the ranks of those who have lost (all spiritual good).
6:118. So eat of (meats) on which Allah’s name hath been pronounced if ye have faith in His Signs.
6:121. Eat not of (meats) on which Allah’s name hath not been pronounced: that would be impiety. But the evil ones ever inspire their friends to contend with you; if ye were to obey them ye would indeed be pagans.
6:145. Say: “I find not in the Message received by me by inspiration any (meat) forbidden to be eaten by one who wishes to eat it unless it be dead meat or blood poured forth or the flesh of swine for it is an abomination or what is impious (meat) on which a name has been invoked other than Allah’s.” But (even so) if a person is forced by necessity without wilful disobedience nor transgressing due limits thy Lord is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful.
16: 72. And Allah has made for you mates (and companions) of your own nature. And made for you out of them sons and daughters and grandchildren and provided for you sustenance of the best: will they then believe in vain things and be ungrateful for Allah’s favors?
16: 115. He has only forbidden you dead meat and blood and the flesh of swine and any (food) over which the name of other than Allah has been invoked. But if one is forced by necessity without willful disobedience nor transgressing due limits then Allah is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful.
20: 81. (Saying): “Eat of the good things We have provided for your sustenance but commit no excess therein lest My Wrath should justly descend on you: and those on whom descends My Wrath do perish indeed!
22:28. That they may witness the benefits (provided) for them and celebrate the name of Allah through the Days appointed over the cattle which He has provided for them (for sacrifice): then eat ye thereof and feed the distressed ones in want.
23: 51. O ye apostles! enjoy (all) things good and pure and work righteousness: for I am well-acquainted with (all) that ye do.
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